Beautiful image sent to me by @redlitmus  Truly gorgeous imagery for Sofielle! Thanks so much!!

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Beautiful image sent to me by @redlitmus  Truly gorgeous imagery for Sofielle! Thanks so much!!

Chapter dedicated to BecomingApocalypse. Thanks for reading and commenting. You always make me giggle. lol

Chapter 159 – The Queen Returns – Felaern's POV

Centuries.

For centuries, I looked for her. I scoured every realm, followed every lead and nothing...not a trace. Until I finally accepted the unthinkable—only death could have kept her from returning to me.

But I had been wrong.

Oh, so wrong.

There was a creature more vile than death, more loathsome than the grave—Acheron.

He had dared to do the unthinkable. He had stolen from me, a treasure worth more than all of the gold and silver in the world, worth more than my own life—he had taken my mate.

And for that he would pay.

His pain would be long and unimaginable.

We stepped from the portal into my realm, the Fae Kingdom, and stood on an elevated, large structure of smooth white marble. It was disk-shaped, cleaved into a perfect circle, with ornate marble archways all around. It was a landing pad of sorts; each archway carved and inscribed with Fae symbols, portals to different worlds.

And heavily guarded. Thirty Fae males, dressed in gleaming metal armor, stood at equal-distance around the edge of the circle. Their posture was held at rapt attention, head high and eyes wary for any dangers or intruders. Uninvited guests would be struck down instantly should they make the mistake of entering my realm without permission.

There was instant recognition when I came through but they did not drop to a knee and bow, not when they were on duty. I couldn't count how many times I had been bowed to...I was not in desperate need of subservience.  I would much rather have their attention on the task at hand.

As quickly as they recognized me, their attention then flitted toward the company I kept. Tension rolled through them, their muscles contracting in preparation to strike, as they eyed Killian and his men warily. There was no concealing the three were Dark Fae. Unlike Light Fae, who could retract and conceal their snow-white wings, the Dark Fae's ebony wings were on full display and attested to their black nature. Killian's lip curled into a sneer, his shoulders back, his stance wide, staring down any who dared make eye contact with him. There was silence all around.

I still held the tether to Acheron, who was lying on the ground behind me, and gave the line a hard jerk, causing his body to bump into the air a few feet before he landed again with a thud. He grunted, but was wise enough to hold his tongue. He would be lucky if I didn't cut it out three times a day for the next hundred years. Of course, it would grow back each time, but that wasn't the point. The point was pain, all of the creative and magical ways I was going to inflict pain on him. It would be constant. There would be no break in his agony, not a single breath would flow from his lungs without his feeling the sadistic kiss of my torture. Feral anticipation roiled through my stomach.

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